Mason Hawkins

Mason Hawkins

Last Update: 2014-12-10

Number of Stocks: 30
Number of New Stocks: 5

Total Value: $18,328 Mil
Q/Q Turnover: 12%

Countries: USA
Details: Top Buys | Top Sales | Top Holdings  Embed:

Mason Hawkins Watch

  • Mason Hawkins Comments on Dell

    Over the last six months, our Dell (DELL) position remained a top contributor with the underlying stock appreciating 33%. In the recent quarter, the stock was a detractor, declining 6% as uncertainty increased over the outcome of the proposed management buyout. We continued to work with Carl Icahn to propose a better alternative for shareholders. Given his structure, flexibility, and capital, Icahn was in the best position to lead the development of an outcome that provided an attractive payout but allowed shareholders to remain owners and benefit from the company's transformation. We sold approximately half of our Dell shares to Icahn to enable him to construct a compelling alternative. Subsequent to quarterend, the Dell Board has extended the vote on the buyout offer three times as it became obvious that shareholders would not approve the deal. Prior to the third postponement, Michael Dell and Silver Lake increased their offer to $13.75 and included a special dividend of 13 cents plus the normal third quarter 8 cent dividend. Southeastern continues to oppose the offer and will work with Icahn Enterprises to ensure that Dell has the right leadership who will focus the company on its profitable and growing enterprise business while allowing long-term shareholders to participate in its long-term success.

    From Mason Hawkins' semi-annual 2013 report.  

  • Mason Hawkins Comments on AON

    Aon (AON) also performed well in the quarter and first half, adding 5% and 16% respectively. As the world's largest insurance broker, the Risk Solutions group grows with global economic recovery as insurance pricing and risk coverage increase. In addition, fiduciary income should rise as interest rates move up. CEO Greg Case and his team continue to improve the Human Resources segment, which has been hampered by various issues including European weakness. By repurchasing $300 million in shares at discounts to our appraisal, management built value per share over the period.

    From Mason Hawkins' semi-annual 2013 report.  

  • Mason Hawkins Comments on Berkshire Hathaway

    Berkshire Hathaway (BRK)(BRK.A)(BRK.B), which we purchased for the second time in our history in 2012, rose 7% in the quarter and has advanced 25% YTD. The price rose earlier this year when BRK announced its joint acquisition of Heinz with 3G Capital. During the recent quarter, the company's various operating businesses reported solid results. In insurance, GEICO profitably grew at faster rates than its peers, and a lack of catastrophes benefitted reinsurance. In the rail segment, BNSF increased units and price with particularly strong transportation of petroleum and consumer products. The company's utilities had rate increases and higher natural gas volumes due to a colder winter. Additionally, BRK announced the acquisition of NV Energy, a Nevada utility.

    From Mason Hawkins' semi-annual 2013 report.  

  • Mason Hawkins Comments on DirecTV

    Three holdings have been among the largest positive contributors for both the quarter and the first half. DIRECTV (DTV) advanced 9% over the last three months and has risen 23% YTD. We have owned DTV for over eight years as its value has grown along with its price. CEO Mike White is one of our "all-star" partners. He and his team have grown ARPU (average revenue per user) for the company's 20 million U.S. satellite subscribers even as the industry has matured. Management has also made high-return investments in Latin America where subscribers have grown rapidly, making this geographic segment almost half of our DTV appraisal. Management consistently has returned capital to owners through repurchasing undervalued shares, including $1.4 billion in the second quarter.

    From Mason Hawkin's semi-annual report 2013.  

  • Longleaf Partners June 2013 Semi-Annual Report

  • Mason Hawkins' Longleaf Shareholder Letter Second Quarter 2013

    The relative underperformance in the quarter came as much from what we did not own as from price moves in our names. The financial sector, specifically banks and life insurers whose leverage is too risky for our appetite, drove a large portion of return in U.S. and global indices as interest rates bumped up. Our cash position built during the first quarter with sales of businesses approaching our appraisals and dampened our performance relative to the rising indices. Various individual holdings detracted from second quarter returns, and most of those were retreats from recent strong rallies. No common denominator impacted our primary performance detractors.

    Any single quarter usually indicates little about our long-term results. Rarely in Southeastern's 38 years have our 1, 5, and 10 year returns simultaneously lagged the benchmark, but currently the Partners Fund is in such a period. Longleaf International faced this same challenge within the last twelve months before its relative returns improved. While absolute returns are our primary focus, underperforming the market over these periods is disappointing and unacceptable, but not unprecedented. When we had a similarly tough stretch in 2000, the Partners and Small-Cap Funds fell behind their benchmarks for 1, 5, and 10 year periods by a much wider margin than today's Partners Fund lag. Then and now, the combination of a few stock-specific challenges and an extreme market environment that rewarded a narrow segment of stocks caused our underperformance. In 2000, the high-flying growth and Internet stocks selling at nosebleed multiples propelled the market, while we owned high quality businesses that sold at attractive discounts because they were part of the "old economy." A few troubled visible names also hurt our performance (Waste Management, Host Marriott, SafetyKleen). During the last five years, higher yielding, stable "safe stocks" became overvalued and led the market in an environment plagued by fear and volatility. We own steeply discounted, more cyclical companies with high quality assets and/or entrenched competitive advantages. A few troubled, visible names have caused a large portion of our longer term underperformance both in the U.S. (Dell, Chesapeake, Level 3) and outside the U.S. (HRT). Within five years of the 2000 period, the Partners and Small-Cap Funds had dramatically outperformed their indices with 5 and 10 year numbers far higher than their benchmarks. Today, we believe our absolute and relative return opportunity for the next five and ten years is equally as bright across all four Longleaf Funds for several reasons.  

  • Mega Positions of Bidder Mason Hawkins – DELL Shareholders Vote on $24.4 Billion Buyout

    On the eve of the Dell (DELL) shareholder’s voting results, let’s take a look at the current mega position holdings of low-key activist investor, Mason Hawkins, a bidder in the Dell takeover.

    As of June 10, 2013, the updated portfolio of Mason Hawkins, Chairman of Southeastern Asset Management, lists 37 stocks, none of them new, with a total value of $22.24 billion and a 4% quarter-over-quarter turnover.  

  • Mason Hawkins Cuts Holdings in Saks, DineEquity and Service Corp.

    Mason Hawkins of Southeastern Asset Management and Longleaf Partners had a busy day yesterday; the guru made decreases in several of his holdings. As of March 31, Hawkins’ Southeastern portfolio contained 37 stocks and was valued at over $22 billion.


  • Transcript from Longleaf Partners Annual Investor Meeting


    Introduction: Lee Harper

  • Mason Hawkins Comments on JCP, DELL, CHK in Shareholder Meeting Presentation

    It's also my special privilege to welcome you to our 2013 Longleaf meeting. It's special because this is the twenty-fifth consecutive annual gathering of our mutual fund partners and because of the progress our investments have made since we were last together. Lee noted the Funds' good performance for 2012 and through the first quarter of this year. Equally if not more important, we made monumental progress improving the corporate governance and management of the few Longleaf companies that needed new leadership. We've added directors and put in place leaders who are good capital stewards and proven owner-operators. Critically, these talented individuals are clearly focused on prudently building intrinsic value per share. Additionally, we're happy to report the value enhancing changes were made efficiently and effectively without litigation or proxy fights. We are confident these changes portend good things for Longleaf's future returns.

    As we discussed often and many of you know, Benjamin Graham spent most of his professional life defining intelligent investing. His two incomparable texts, Security Analysis and The Intelligent Investor, provided the tools for valuing investments, and the necessary psychological framework for successful capital commitments. Warren Buffett, by example and through his lucid writings, has added materially to those disciplines, and we've applied those disciplines fairly intensively for the last 40 years. Graham summarized his work postulating the imperative that every good investment must qualify quantitatively and qualitatively. Quantitatively, capital investments should be made only when prices are significantly discounted from conservative appraisals. Qualitatively, companies should be competitively advantaged and expected to grow. And management ought to be shareholder oriented, operationally competent, and sage capital allocators.  

  • Mason Hawkins' Southeastern Comments on Dell First Quarter Earnings Release

    As long-term shareholders of Dell (DELL), we closely reviewed the Company's fiscal first quarter earnings results, as reported on an accelerated basis last week following a series of leaks to the marketplace.

    Our reaction to Dell's quarterly results differs significantly from most public commentary:  

  • Value Idea Contest - PostNL at 3x Earnings

    PostNL (PNL) is the Dutch postal service. By law, the company may charge $0.60 for carrying a letter from Breda to Borger. The U.S. postal service provides a similar service. USPS charges $0.46 for taking a letter from Baltimore to Butte. Any Butte.

    Perhaps unsurprisingly, PostNL is profitable. A series of one-time charges has obscured this fact, driving the stock down to 3x normalized earnings.  

  • Mason Hawkins Increases Holdings in 5 Stocks

    Guru Mason Hawkins of Southeastern Asset Management increased the firm’s holdings of seven companies in the most recent quarter. Hawkins has been the Chairman and CEO of Southeastern Asset Management since 1975, and he and his partners manage the Longleaf Partners Fund.

    In the first quarter of 2013, Hawkins added to seven, reduced eight and sold out of eight stocks. In Mason Hawkins’ Longleaf Funds Q1 2013 letter he said, “Our conservatism combined with the strong market positions and the financial strength of our companies also should help protect values in the event of an unexpected economic setback. Our cash positions will allow us to exploit short-term market or company-specific dislocations. Longer term, we believe our absolute return goal of inflation plus 10% remains achievable.”  

  • Southeastern Asset Reduces Eight, Major Slash on Building Materials

    In the first quarter of 2013, Guru Mason Hawkins, chairman and CEO of Southeastern Asset Management, reduced his position with eight companies, three of them in the building materials sector. Here’s a review of his reductions as of March 31, 2013:

    [b]Reduced: Vulcan Materials Company (VMC) – Building Materials  

  • Mason Hawkins Gives Mickey Mouse the Boot, First Quarter Sells in Review

    Demonstrating once again that emotion can never get in the way of investing decisions, Guru Mason Hawkins of Southeastern Asset Management determined in the first quarter of 2013 that, as the Mickey Mouse Club once sang, “Now it’s time to say goodbye.” Hawkins let go of Mickey Mouse and other timeless icons of entertainment when he sold out his long-held stake in Walt Disney Co., as well as seven more companies.

    Here’s a review of the southern gentleman activist’s sells as of March 31, 2013:  

  • Longleaf Partners Q1 2013 Shareholder Report

  • Real-Time with Mason Hawkins, Major Sell SCI

    According to the GuruFocus Real Time Picks, Mason Hawkins of Southeastern Asset Management, reduced his Service Corporation International Inc. (SCI) shares by 43.81% in the average price range of $16.83, as of May 10, 2013. Hawkins now owns 13,813,222 shares or 6.5% of the company. The stock price is $16.95 with a change from average up 1%. This trade impacts his portfolio by 0.82%. Service Corporation International is the largest provider of funeral, cemetery and deathcare products and services in North America.

    A look at the trading history from second quarter of 2008 to fourth quarter 2012 shows a consistent high-gain path. Hawkins made his highest gain of 331.3% on this holding in the first quarter of 2009.  

  • Mason Hawkins' Longleaf Funds Q1 2013 Letter

    We are pleased with our strong start to 2013. All four Longleaf Funds outpaced our absolute annual return goal of inflation plus 10% in the first quarter. Both the Partners and Small-Cap Funds posted double-digit performance. The Partners and International Funds also outperformed their respective indices over the last three months.

    Stock prices increased faster than values over the last three months. As price-to-value ratios (P/Vs) and portfolio weights rose, we trimmed a number of holdings. We sold several companies that approached our appraisals. Cash levels increased as few new qualifiers met our requisite discount. Not surprisingly, with an S&P return double that of EAFE, we are finding more opportunities in companies based outside the U.S.  

  • Mason Hawkins Chops Madison Square Gardens as MSG Sells LYV

    In his trade on March 11, 2013, Mason Hawkins, chairman of Southeastern Asset Management, reduced his Madison Square Gardens Company (MSG) position by 40.36%, bringing his current shares to 2.6 million. The current price for MSG is $55.95 with a 0% change from average. The Mason Hawkins’ holding history of MSG shows that he began unloading MSG in the second quarter of 2012 as the quarterly average price was going up. See MSG’s 10-year valuations here.


  • Mason Hawkins and Gurus Ditch Gravel

    On March 6, 2013, Mason Hawkins, chairman of Southeastern Asset Management, reduced his shares of Martin Marietta Materials (MLM) by 21.96%, with his current shares now at 4,362,121. The current price of MLM is $104.7, with a change from average of 3%. Since December 2011 Martin Marietta Materials has attempted to buy out Vulcan Materials Company (VMC), first making a hostile takeover bid of $4.8 billion for VMC at $36.69 per share, followed by an unsolicited offer of $5.5 billion in May 2012 at $42 per share. According to the Birmingham Business Journal, Vulcan Materials got an injunction blocking Martin Marietta Materials from pursuing a hostile takeover. The Vulcan position was that the MLM offer undervalued the company and was too optimistic about the possible merger benefits. Time will tell if MLM will offer a higher price in a friendly takeover.

    Meanwhile, it looks like many investor Gurus are unloading aggregates and basic materials companies MLM and VMC for now. Gurus Ray Dalio and John Griffin sold out their MLM shares in December 2012, and Steven Cohen reduced his MLM by 96.44%. In the last quarter of 2012, investor Gurus Bruce Kovner, Jim Simons and Tom Russo sold out their stakes in VMC. Currently, Steven Cohen has only 8,744 shares of his VMC stake after his reductions in third quarter 2012. Here’s an in-depth analysis of Vulcan Materials Company.  

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